After an 8–1 blowout victory over the St. Peter’s Peacocks on Tuesday, the Yale woman’s soccer team (3–3) is looking for another couple of wins at home.
Just one week before the start of Ivy League competition, the Elis are taking on the Iona College Gaels (2–3–1) on Friday night and the Central Connecticut State Devils (1–4) on Sunday afternoon.
While the Bulldogs have not recently lined up against the Gaels, they have had a longstanding rivalry with the Devils, head coach Rudy Meredith said. “It’s always a really close game against Central,” Meredith said. “They’re a really well-coached team.”
In anticipating fiercer competition, the Elis have been honing their skills in practice.
The only goal the Bulldogs allowed the Peacocks to squeeze by them on Tuesday was due to losing a battle for position on a corner kick.
“Most of the goals we have let in this year have been from corner kicks,” Meredith said. “We addressed the issue in practice yesterday.”
According to Meredith, the Bulldogs also want to continue to put the ball in the net and create scoring chances. Earlier in the season, the Elis had trouble creating scoring opportunities. The Elis are hopeful they can continue their scoring momentum after the St. Peter’s game, added Meredith.
Scoring goals and preventing them have not been the only issues the Elis have faced, however. They also have contended with injury. Goaltender Adele Jackson-Gibson ’13 tore her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) early last week, leaving the Bulldogs without their starting goalkeeper. Illness and injury have hindered the Bulldogs in establishing roles on the team.
“We want to make sure we are getting better as a team and all try to stay healthy,” Meredith said. “We want to work on the things we have to do against Princeton.”
With injuries among other hindrances, the Bulldogs are still thinking about what players to put in which positions for this weekend as well as for Princeton the following week.
The Bulldogs are excited for tough competition this weekend, as it will help prepare them quickly for their upcoming conference games, Meredith said. The Elis have been thinking about scoring, defending and positioning all week. This weekend will test their skills before Ivy play begins next week.
“This is one of those tough weekends because we’ve got Princeton next weekend,” said Meredith.
The Bulldogs kickoff against the Gaels in Reese Stadium at 7 p.m. on Friday. After a day of rest, they will be back in Reese Stadium, Sunday at 4 p.m., to take on Central Connecticut.
Conference games start for the Bulldogs the following weekend.